The Benefits of Meditation – Don’t Miss Them!
Ever heard of the benefits of meditation? Of course you have! Everybody is talking about it: Your friend who does yoga, the hippies who are trying to get you to join their world peace movement, or even the high performer who’s set on a big mission in life. This simple, yet powerful activity is very common among the top performers of any field in the world…
Perhaps a friend already tried to pitch you on the benefits of meditation, but you rejected it with the excuse “I don’t have time”. Or maybe you tried it, but didn’t know how to focus properly, so you ditched it while concluding it’s not for you… If you did, I have good news for you further down the page! 😉
But, what exactly are the benefits of meditation? What is it? How do I do it? So many questions. All will be answered here.
Definition of Meditation – What is Meditation?
One of Thefreedictionary.com’s explanations:
“To train, calm, or empty the mind, often by achieving an altered state, as by focusing on a single object, especially as a form of religious practice in Buddhism or Hinduism.”
However, you do not have to have any religious angle, at all.
Meditation brings better health to us – it’s like a multivitamin drink for your brain. Meditation is food for the soul. It energizes the mind. It can be practiced in many ways, such as Creative Visualization, which is practiced to learn a new skill or create a powerful image of your future of a desired goal. Another one is practicing Gratitude. Yet another style, which is becoming increasingly popular is “Loving Kindness Meditation”. Vipassana Meditation, which was taught by Buddha more than 2,500 years ago aims for the total eradication of mental impurities and the resultant highest happiness of full liberation through self-observation.
What method do I practice the most?
Focused Meditation, where you learn to quiet your mind and relieve it of all your stress and worries, while significantly enhancing your cognitive abilities. It’s extremely potent, if done right (which is very, very easy). I can’t go by without practicing gratitude either. I simply have to! 😉
Will I show you?
No! Just kidding. Of course I will. To read my simple guide on focused meditation go here: 10 min meditation.
Benefits of Meditation – Some May Surprise You!
You know what?
I could give you a long list of benefits that’ll make you wanna drop anything and out-meditate Master Yoda from Star Wars right now (and I will do that too)! But, that won’t make you truly understand how powerful this really is, will it? Knowing and remembering the benefits could push you to success even on those days when don’t feel like meditating.
The benefits of meditation just keep getting more and more every day as scientists delve into the mysteries of it. So, let’s focus in on a few, and see what benefits you get, for free 😉
Enhance Your Focus
Meditation has time and again been proven to enhance the ability to concentrate & focus (source).
This is fantastic, since we live in a world that is increasingly weakening our ability to single-mindedly take on a task. Social media takes a big part of that responsibility. People constantly cycle through checking whatever platforms they’re on, like browsing Facebook – Instagram – Tinder – Snapchat – E-mail – etc… and then repeating that cycle again and again, lol! Our minds are trained to “multi-task”, which makes us more “efficient”.
Studies have shown that multi-tasking is physically damaging to the brain (source) and it actually makes us perform worse on the tasks we’re juggling. In the modern world of today, an ability to single-mindedly focus on one task at a time can give you a serious competitive advantage over your rivals.
I’ll never forget the first time I started to meditate. My job then only allowed me 3-4 hours or sleep at night. I found that this severely decreased my will power and ability to focus clearly. I made stupid decisions I normally wouldn’t make. Coffee didn’t help much either.
When I began meditating only 5-10 minutes/day I started to notice a difference. When I increased it to 20 min/day I saw a great improvement! Of all the benefits of meditation, I value this one the most!
Get More Grey Matter & Reduce Your Cognitive Decline
Grey matter has been found to increase in volume in the hippocampus and frontal areas of the brain (source). These areas are for learning, the memory, self-awareness, compassion, and introspection.
Blast Away Your Anxiety
Research shows that meditation weakens the link between your fear center and the center that processes everything related to you, while strengthening the bond to the reasoning skills, which makes us act more calm and centered in tense situations.
Feelings (such as anxiety) manifest themselves in our body as emotions. Meditation dissolves the negative feelings and makes them disappear, because this turns off the mind (the part of your brain that keeps talking to you about everything, including non-sense and fear inducing thoughts).
Decrease Your Pain – Without Needing Drugs
A new study (source) from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center found mindfulness meditation reduces emotional pain by 44% and pain intensity by 27%. The effects last even if you stop meditating for a while. Note, this is not a cure-all for pain.
This decrease of pain is in many cases greater than what drugs (including morphine) can give. That’s good news for people with chronic pain, especially in the US where 80% of all opioid prescriptions in the world are written. This benefit of meditation is simply amazing!
Slow Down Your Aging
Sara Lazar, a researcher at Harvard University who conducted a study on meditation, says that “cognition seems to be preserved in meditators”, referring to them growing older but their brains remaining younger and still very capable. It simply slows down the aging effects on the brain.
Furthermore, she says: “One of such regions is in the front of the brain and it’s important for working memory and executive decision making.
And when we plotted the data vs the ages of the subjects, we found something extremely interesting. Normally, when we get older, the cortex region of our brain shrinks – that’s the reason why it becomes increasingly harder to figure things out and to remember things as we get older.
However, our data showed clearly that 50-year-old meditators had the same amount of neurological matter as 25-year-olds!“
Sara’s research (source) also shows that the aging of the body, atleast at a cellular level, can slow down the aging process by protecting caps (called telomeres) on the ends of our chromosomes.
Get Your Creative Juices Flowing
It’ difficult to verify this, but from my own personal experience I know I get better, more solid ideas while meditating, or even after. Something happens in the brain where ideas, information and imagery buried in the subconscious mind rise to the surface in the form of new, fresh ideas. Fascinating, really. I’m always amazed of how good they are! 😉
Your Negativity Evaporates With Enhanced Compassion
Benefits of meditation include an increase of our levels of compassion too, research shows (source). It improves our empathy and is done through a method called “Loving-Kindness-Meditation”, which is usually practiced by Buddhist monks. Of all Buddhist meditations, loving-kindness has the immediate benefit of sweetening and changing old habituated negative patterns of mind, because it dissolves pain and confusion.
This style of meditation produces 4 qualities of love: Friendliness, Compassion, Appreciative Joy & Equanimity (keeping your composure in stressful situations).
Boost Your Memory
Yes! Your ability to disregard unimportant information and stay focused on what truly matters will definitely be increased with meditation. If you pay attention, you’ll already notice a small improvement within days of meditating (I speak from experience when I started meditating 20 min a day).
Calming of Your Senses
This benefit of meditation is well known among people who meditate regularly. In a world that drives you crazy with multi-tasking and lots of pressure, meditation might just be your savior.
The Big Benefits List
Here’s the list I spoke of earlier.
Performance & Mind
Increases your self-control.
It makes you the master of your mind and not the other way around.
Makes you more productive.
Increases the volume of grey matter in several areas of the brain (source).
Slows down the aging of your brain.
Improves your memory.
Improves your focus & concentration (source).
Builds your ability to give your attention single-mindedly.
It improves your intuition.
Improves information processing and decision making.
Your self-confidence increases.
Improves your self-esteem.
Makes you more disciplined.
Brain & Moods
Boosts your happiness.
Decreases anxiety levels.
Decreases stress (source).
Puts the center of control inside you, instead of the outside world.
Teaches your emotional self-control.
Decreases depression, almost as effective (or better) as antidepressant drugs! (source)
Makes you feel harmonious.
Brings you joy, by being in “the here and now”.
Social Life & Relationships
Increases ability to make social connections.
Increases emotional intelligence.
Builds a better connection with people.
Increases your awareness of people’s moods.
Makes you more compassionate (source).
Makes you feel less lonely.
Reduction of social anxiety.
Body & Health
Enhances immune system.
Decreases pain (source).
Slows down aging.
Improves your sleep.
Lowers high blood pressure (source).
Helps to build and contain sexual energy.
Reduced need for medical care.
How To Meditate
The more responsibilities you have, the more challenges and ambitions you have… the busier and stressed you are… the MORE you need meditation! Meditation not only reduces stress, it enhances your abilities to face the challenges in life, from small, insignificant ones to big, stressful challenges. It brings clarity. It brings order. It improves your cognitive abilities, such as focus and decision making.
You have come this far (good job!) and may be wondering, “how do I meditate? I wanna have all those benefits too!” or “I barely have any time, can you show me how?”. Yes, I do it in a very easy way, which I’m showing you here 10 min meditation.
What to do next?
1. Share this article!
2. Download my Free E-Book “13 Secret Mindhacks to Powerfully Transform Your Life”!
3. What technique are you most excited to use? How have you benefitted from this article? Tell us in the comments section below!